Academic sorority offers unique recruitment experience

By Emily McCarthy

Phi Sigma Rho, an academic sorority for majors in science, technology, engineering and math, had a unique take on rush this semester. Its theme was “Walking Through the Decades,” and each day included themed events from a different decade.

Jade Sweitzer, president of Phi Sigma Rho and senior biology major, said the group chose the event themes based on some of the activities it collectively wanted to do for the week. 

“We do events during our recruitment week every semester. This year we have decided to do more fun things, following the last year and a half of virtual events,” she said. “This time we wanted to go skating, so we found a theme that could do that! Also, Bob Ross painting is almost a tradition for recruitment week.”

Brooke Keller, vice president of recruitment, said it is unique to other campus sororities for a few different reasons. The organization works to best accommodate those involved.

“Because we are an academic sorority, we only accept majors in STEM. Therefore, we are not a part of Greek Life,” she said. “Our sorority is unique because we are much more affordable than other sororities, our meeting times change every semester to accommodate our sisters and joining Phi Rho means getting to know other women with similar passions and being able to ask them for support wherever it is needed.”

Avery Jones, director of fundraising, said she joined to network with students in similar majors and in her classes. She said the group does a lot of fundraising in addition to supporting the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.

“I am the fundraising chair of the sorority, so we just raise money in any way we can so we can do events,“ she said. “We went ice skating last year. We also went to a hockey game before.”

Jones said due to the complicated nature of STEM majors’ schedules, members try to organize events in the best interest of other members. One of the goals of the sorority is to unite people with common majors and classes.

“We just did things here and there so it just won’t overwhelm us with being in a sorority and being a STEM major,” she said. “It’s already kind of overwhelming. It’s just … enough to help you network.”

For interested students, rush events started the week of Sept. 27, and included a favorite decade costume contest, planting and flower pot decorating, roller blading and Bob Ross painting. Those interested had to attend at least two of the four events. 

For more information, students can contact Brooke Keller at